Dangerous Game (Ferrara, 1993)

In Dangerous Game, Abel Ferrara crafts a relentless train wreck of colliding personalities posing as artists. Eddie Israel (Harvey Kietel) starts production on is latest movie entitled Mother of Mirrors, a verbose morality tale about a modern couple taking out their rage on each other. Eddie manipulates the epic ego’s of his two lead actors (Madonna and James Russo) in the name of art, using them like pawns without regard. But he’s no better than they are. The director acts exactly like his spoiled talent, cheating, drinking, and talking like a true fake. Ferrara combines faux on-set documentary footage of the production with 35mm film in order to disorient the difference between reality and fiction. Normally, such a ploy would seem overly simplistic, but Ferrara combines long takes and rigid close-ups to establish an intimacy with the anger and insecurities of his volatile characters. Basically each major character can’t understand why everyone doesn’t bow down to their talents, and it’s these hilariously ripe persona’s which hold interest until the final, disturbingly fake (or is it?) moment of violence.

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